Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Getting Organized, Part 2

Preceding my three-legged silver jewelry stand bought at a cheap, teeny-bopper store, was a purple, sparkly, three-legged jewelry stand bought at a cheap teeny-bopper store. It didn't have enough necklace holding hooks, so I got the silver one, and the purple sparkly one became my new hair accessory holder. Before the purple, sparkly hair accessory holder was a bowl. A gold bowl. All my hair accessories were in there: Clippies of all sizes, barrettes, hair bands, head bands, bobby pins, etc. All jumbled up in a big wad. It drove me nuts. So I was pleased as punch when I recommissioned my old purple sparkly jewelry holder as a hair accessory holder. Except for one problem. It was three-legged. It was three-legged as a jewelry holder, and it continued to be three- legged as a hair accessory holder. And if you need a recap on why three legs suck, here it is: Whoever invented three-legged things has never heard of the laws of physics. Albert Einstien explained in the 4th law of thermodynamics, "If an object with three legs comes into contact with any other object, person, force or thought wave anywhere near or far from its vicinity, it will tip over. If there is a sink or trash can nearby, it will tip over in that direction." So just as I eventually came to despise my silver, sparkly, three-legged jewelry holder, I came to despise my purple, three-legged hair accessory holder. And I came up with this solution:

It couldn't have been easier to make. I actually completed the whole project in one session instead of spread out over days and days in between feeding the baby and taking the kids to swimming lessons. Here's how to do it:

1) Buy a length of ribbon (mine's about 2 feet long, 1 1/2" wide). I chose a ribbon with holes to make it easier for the clippies to attach to it.
2) Buy 2 artificial flowers. Something flat on the back is preferable. Detach the stems.
3) Buy another bit of ribbon (I reused the 1/2" red ribbon from my jewelry holder). It should be about 6-7" long.
4) Hot glue the ends of the ribbon to the backs of the flowers.
5) Make the narrow ribbon piece into a loop (like those pink cancer ribbons) and hot glue it to the back of the top flower.
6) That's it! You're done! Just attach your hair clippies, barrettes, etc., (it doesn't hold hair bands, unfortunately, unless you want to loop them over your flower. But I decided to just put them in a drawer.) and mount it to a hook or nail on the wall.

This little piece of organization cost me about $4 and partially covered up a spackle job on the wall left by the previous owners. More importantly, it may have prevented a future stroke on the party of Big Daddy, who despised my stupid, tipping-over, three-legged, purple sparkly jewelry hair accessory holder with a passion nearly as much as I did. Ok more. Much more. Hence the impending stroke. So, hooray for organization!

Monday, July 18, 2011

Getting Organized, Part 1

Last week I was infected by a strange bug. It took over me and left me feeling odd and not like myself. It caused some bizarre symptoms too. I suddenly wanted to clean instead of nap. I no longer wanted to continue the love affair with piles that I nurtured so carefully during my pregnancy. I actually wanted to get rid of stuff instead of save it.

The most notable symptom of this bug was the overwhelming desire to organize. Deep inside I am a very organized person. I like to clean, I like to put things where they go and have a place for them. Going to The Container Store is like Disneyland for me. But mostly I keep this desire to organize bottled up inside, thickly padded by the desire to sleep, read, watch TV and get on the computer when I have free time.

This week was different. I DID SOME STUFF. So I'm going to highlight some of the super-mom, ultra-organized, crafty person projects I did that left me feeling very impressed with myself.

Part 1: My Jewelry Holder.

I bought a jewelry holder a few years back at one of those teeny-bopper jewelry stores. It looked vaguely like a wedge of cheese married a carousel. It had a tray for bracelets. It had little hooks to hang necklaces. It had little holes to hang earrings from. It was just right. Except that it also had three legs. Let me tell you something about three legs: Three legs is the reason why chairs and tables and everything else has four legs. Three legs suck. Three legs tip over and dump all your jewelry on the floor every time a slight breeze passes your dresser. So after the eighteen thousandth time of cleaning up my jewelry and putting it all back on my jewelry stand, I decided to come up with a better idea. So I ripped off my sister's* jewelry holder idea, made a few adjustments, and this is what I came up with:

The nice thing is, it filled an empty spot on my wall as well as creating a neat, easy-to-access place to put all my jewelry. Here's the How To in case you're interested:

1. Go to the craft store and get a poster frame with your 40% off coupon (mine is 22x25"), some ribbon to match your room decor (1 1/2" and 1/2" widths), spray adhesive, quilting tacks, a roll of cork board, and some push pins. You can also buy some fabric to cover up the cork board if you don't like the look of cork board. Just don't go with a crazy pattern as your jewelry won't stand out against, say, paisleys or plaid.)
2. Remove the glass and cardboard backing from the frame.
3. Carefully place the glass somewhere your husband won't step through it. Flat on the garage floor, for example, is not an ideal spot. Don't skip this step. Especially if you have plans to use the glass for another picture whose glass has broken. And especially if your husband has a habit of walking around the garage barefoot.)
4. Spray both the back of the cork board and the cardboard backing with spray adhesive.
5. Lay the cork board on the backing crooked.
6. Realize that spray adhesive bonds instantly and you won't be able to adjust the cork board.
7. Carefully try to peel the cork board off the backing.
8. Realize that working with cork board glued to cardboard with spray adhesive is about like trying to work with wet crackers.
9. Find a chisel and remove the many pieces of cork board left sticking to the cardboard backing.
10. Go to the craft store and get some new cork board.
11. Con your husband into helping you lay the cork board down. Just tell him you heard somewhere that it's easier with two people.
12. Fight a bit about whether or not a rubber roller is needed to smooth down the cork board. (He will be right about this, of course, but you can get by without one).
13. While you are fighting, go fetch a broom and dust pan to clean up the glass shards from the glass insert you didn't prop up somewhere out of the way.
14. Fetch some tweezers and apologize profusely as you remove glass shards from your husband's feet.
15. Lay out the stripes of ribbon across the front side of your cork board. How many to use and how far apart to place them depends on how much/what kind of jewelry you have. I recommend laying your jewelry all out side by side on the cork board so you will know.
16. Secure the edges of the ribbon with quilting tacks.
17. Every 3 inches along the smaller ribbon, place a dot of hot glue. This will keep your ribbon from sagging when the earrings are hung on it.
18. Hot glue the ends of the ribbon to the back of the cork board/cardboard backing.
19. Place clear push pins just above the wide ribbon, every inch or so, for bracelets, watches, and necklaces.
20. Mount the frame on the wall and hang up your jewelry!


*(The credit for this idea goes to my sister, Jennie, as do all good ideas I have. One of the best benefits of having an older sister is that someone else weeds out the bad ideas and passes on all the good ones!)

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Which Witch?

Which do you like better?

Clipping your toe nails or painting your toe nails?

Going on a trip or sleeping in your own bed after a trip?

Wearing a new shirt or throwing away a ratty old shirt?

Putting a crabby baby to bed or getting a happy baby out of bed?

Putting on fuzzy warm socks or peeling off too-hot socks?

Curling up in under a warm blanket or climbing between cool sheets?

Cooking a meal everyone enjoys or eating a meal you didn't have to cook?

Getting in your car, warm in the garage in the winter or getting in your car in the summer after being in an over-air conditioned room?

Watching a movie or making a movie?

Paying a compliment and seeing someone's face light up or recieving an a sincere compliment you weren't expecting?

Skipping church or missing a dentist appointment?

Opening presents or shopping with a gift card?

Walking on the beach or strolling through the woods?

Listening to a thunder storm rolling in or finally hearing it roll away?

Having the money to buy that expensive item you never could afford or finding an item you always wanted on sale?

Losing a pound or eating a perfect slice of cake?

Walking through a beautiful garden or getting a bouquet of cut flowers?

Hearing the phone ring or hearing the answering machine pick it up?

Knowing it's Friday night or knowing it's Saturday morning?

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Just a TITCH late--Happy Birthday, Daphne!

Ok, so her birthday was a month ago. I have had a few tiny things to do in the last month. Like breast-feed non-stop and go through endless boxes of clothes trying to find one solitary pair of short or capris that might fit me without the use of a rubber band or liposuction. That took the better part of 3 weeks, truthfully. So, lest she feel slighted when she grows up and reads this blog, here is the recap on Daphne's 6th birthday:

It started with Daphne wanting a dress-up party. But not a princess dress-up party. More like a costume party. She just wanted everyone to dress up as something. Daphne chose to wear her Cleopatra costume from last Halloween. Likewise, Beck wore a Halloween costume, but from two years ago. So he was a Cowboy in Floods.

Next Daphne requested a piñata. A rainbow unicorn piñata, to be exact. And animal print decor. Then she picked out cupcake invitations. And her cake was a giant purse. Are you sensing a lack of cohesion here? Big Daddy tried to make her change some things, to make it more matchy. But I said, what the heck. It's her birthday, let her have what she wants. So a Mexican Costume-Jungle-Cupake-Purse Party, it was! There was a general black/white/hot pink-ness to it, but that's about all that tied it together. And it turned out great.

We played musical chairs, did a relay race, heard the REAL version of Rapunzel, told by Daphne's grandma Boppie, ate cake, jumped on the tramp, and hit the piñata. Here are a few pics:

We started the piñata game with each girl getting two blindfolded hits.

Then we went to three non-blindfolded hits. But even our experienced Mexican princess couldn't get it open.

Eventually we had to break it open the hard way: by 9 iron.

But then candy and toys were a-flowing.

Finally there was cake and ice cream.

And presents...

At age 6, here are some things you should know about Daphne: Daphne is a very unique child. She talks (and argues) like a grown-up, wise beyond her years. She isn't afraid of anyone or anything. She loves all animals, from the biggest down to the smallest (which means she is always bringing "pet" bugs and worms into the house). She doesn't care much for girly stuff like princesses and make-up and jewelry. But she does have quite a liking for the boys already. She hates school but loves her teacher. She doesn't find much need for sleep. She doesn't eat a lot, won't touch any potato product (including french fries), but loves her vegetables. Daphne cares a great deal for frosting (hmmm, wonder where she gets that from?). She is HIGHLY determined and precocious. Just try changing her mind about anything. Daphne is a very talented artist. She is very conscious of textures (tags and seams are her worst enemy). She isn't much of a snuggler, but she is very tender-hearted. She cares for every last creature on this earth and wants to take care of them all, especially her baby sister. Although many of Daphne's more stubborn traits can be less than endearing now, I know they will serve her well as an adult and that she will do something truly amazing with that tenacity. I expect great things from my Daphne.

Happy Birthday, Little Girl!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

It's Time for a Pipdate!

There was bad news and good news at Pippa's 2 month appointment today. But on a side note, can I just scream this out loud: "TWO MONTHS??? HOW IS THAT POSSIBLE?!?" I seriously can't believe it. I love newborns. ADORE newborns. I love when they first come out and they are just this helpless puddle of sweetness and softness. They lie on your chest, they love your warmth, they occasionally sigh in contentment, and you might see them crack half an eye open now and then. I just love it. But it was WAY too short-lived. Now she is awake for long periods of time (well, 1 1/2 hours seems long), she smiles, she is beginning to coo, she looks around and has a definite personality. Where did my tiny newborn go??

Ok, so back to her doctor's visit. The bad news is that she is to be yet another short child of mine. None of my kids have made it past the 20th percentile for height. Pippa is in the 19%. The good news is that she is a fatso! 60th percentile! Daphne was below the charts...still is. Beck's fattest weigh-in put him at 25%. So I'm pleased to say that Pippa is a big fat porker!

She is also sleeping 11 hours a night (on good nights. Some nights she only sleeps 8 or 9, eats and then sleeps 3 more). That's really amazing for a 2 month old. She eats like a champ (clearly), she's very patient, and she loves to look at me and smile this big, open-mouth, squinty-eyed smile at me. She hardly ever cries. She squawks when she is hungry or sleepy and only breaks into a real wail if you ignore her squawks. She has the most monstrously chubby thighs you've ever seen. Her belly button is an outie that has a swirl to it like a galaxy. Her bum is so round it looks like a goose-egg stuck to her back. Her eyes are actually getting lighter and less muddy (come on, blue eyed child!). They are currently blue-ish grey but with a definite greenish tint to them. Her eye lashes are very long but nearly white. Her eyebrows are all white and so they're pretty much invisible. Her hair continues to be a sort of strawberry blond or pale auburn. It'll be interesting to see what color it turns when it grows in.

All in all, I'm very pleased with this baby. I can hardly find a complaint at all. (Other than that she blows out nearly every diaper. She's not a very lady-like pooper!) I think if I was a teacher and she was in my "How to Be a Good Baby Class," she'd get an A+. Or maybe an A. Points might have to be deducted for the number of times I have to wipe poop off her back. Otherwise, Great Job, Pippa!

Oh, and she has a big head. 85%. But then, all my kids do. Due to the massive brains they inherited them from me, no doubt.

So that's the update on my short, stocky angel baby.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Dream A Little Dream of Pee

Have you ever had a recurring dream in your life? One which happens the same or nearly the same over and over throughout a period of/your whole life? I have one. It's kind of gross. But it is one where I am in a public bathroom and I have to go. BAD. But every stall has something wrong with it. A door is missing on this one, no seat on the next one, only a rim. Most of them are full to the brim with nastiness. And usually the floors are covered too, making it impossible for me to find a place to go.

I have been having this same dream, with variations on location and number of disgusting stalls, my whole life. I always wondered why. And then recently (yes, it took me my WHOLE LIFE to figure this out!) I finally figured out what this dream means. It's nothing deep. Not Freudian. No therapy or dream books required. No, it simply means I have to go to the loo and my body is trying to keep me from doing it in my sleep!

I've been having this dream a lot lately. And I realize it's because I have been drinking more than usual. I'm not a thirsty person. Generally the only time I get thirsty (and also the only time water tastes good to me) is between the hours of 8-11pm. And with the extra intake of water to help with milk production, I tend to take in about 24-32 ounces of water right before bed.

I really need to work on drinking between the hours of 9-11 am, but water is just gross that time of day. What can I say?

How about you? Do you have any recurring dreams? And more importantly, when does water taste good to YOU?